AdaptCMS Alpha 2 - December 11th posted December 12

It's been a little while since any activity here on the site, half of it has been working on the CMS and the other half has been work, thanksgiving, that kind of stuff. Thanksgiving time actually was one of the best time periods recently, since the Media Plugin. Besides watching sports and lunch/dinner, with no license plate (stolen) I couldn't drive so I instead spent a lot of time working on the frontend for the Poll Plugin.

While not as much work as I would have liked, has gone into the CMS or sites since the last blog, we have gotten a considerable amount done. As of now, the release date of AdaptCMS Alpha 2 (private release, but if you contact us - I'll send a copy over) is still intended and expected to be by end of 2012.

Continue on to find what's been done and what's next.

Polls Plugin

The backend has been done for quite a while now, but during Thanksgiving time I got to finish the Polls Plugin - for the frontend. Query wise I still think it can be optimized a tiny bit later on, but it does the job now. It works, visually, largely like AdaptCMS 2.0. Where it really differs is the voting storage method and modern feel. First, the Poll is fully AJAX - mainly because voting for a poll is so simple, there is no reason not to have AJAX functionality. Error messages bubble appropiately if you have already voted and after you vote the poll instantly updates along with a success message.

The voting storage functionality now works with the database. This is, unfortunately, because cookies I soon found out failed (badly) back with AdaptCMS 1.x and the move to sessions in 2.x was better, but very soon after I saw based off of a few polls here on the site - that database is the way to go. I plan on functionality before release or afterwards, so that records are purged every so often and in place is some kind of archive. (so once a poll reaches 500 votes, the number/date is stored)

Overall the Polls work great and are already integrated with the Modules Manager. They will likely receive a small upgrade before final release and re-factor some code, but largely the plugin is good to gp.

Links Plugin

A minor plugin, but essentially a continuation of the "Affiliates Manager" plugin I've had in every CMS I've managed in the past 8 years. It's simple, but you can manage a list of links - you can add a text link or an image link. You can give a custom title as well as select a target. If you choose an image, it is tied into the file manager - so any image uploaded will be available.

On the frontend, the Links Plugin uses the Modules Manager. So when you go to add a Module, you select the links plugin and how many links to show or just a specific one. Then on the frontend area where this is enabled, you easily show the links. A little JS functionality replaces the old AdaptCMS method of having a custom URL - instead you get the advantage of the full URL for SEO purposes, but the JS sends out a quick AJAX request to register a click and then onto the website - seamless!

Comments

Another one of the areas that has received an overhaul from AdaptCMS 2.0, the two big changes are that they are now nestable (see reddit for an example, a visually better way of replying to specific comments) and AJAX enabled. Currently the nesting extends to 3 levels deep, but the next version of the comments feature will possibly see nearly-unlimited nest levels (once we figure out a good way to do that Wink). Comments are now fully AJAX, an error message returns if you don't have access to posting or if you've reached the flood limit, incorrect captcha (not in yet) and so on. If you post a comment successfully a little label pops up and the comments list is updated with your new comment, as well as any others posted in the meantime.

The backend will be similar to AdaptCMS 2.0 - functionality wise Comments is up and running, the main changes that will hopefully be in Alpha 2 is captcha and comment approval setting. (that may come later, in the form of sub-permissions)

Conclusion

Wow, that went quick. More went on in the last month including an autoloader for JS/CSS files (very nifty), enhanced admin features, bug fixes, frontend for media and more.

As for what's coming next, comments will be the immediate focus with getting captcha working and finishing the admin area. Between that being finished and the end of the year, captcha will also be expanded to user registration (a setting), basic user profile view page, Field Order drag and drop, possibly modules category selection and a few bug fixes.

You never know what is or isn't going to come up between now and then, but most of that is fairly simple stuff but should get the script in shape for the next version - Beta. After this release drops, a lot of planning will be going on for the Beta, as most of it is unknowns. We definitely want a templating system implemented (twig, smarty, etc.) and a lot of code will be refactored, most of the UI will not stay is as well too.

To shore up that, I expect a lot of work to go into the new AdaptCMS website/API and hopefully some work on the new coding site. Stay tuned and be sure to checkout the full album, which includes 2 more pics!

 

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